Yesterday was one of those days with so many different events that thinking about it with a little distance it seems they couldn't possibly have happened all in one single day.
My morning started at the Four Seasons Centre with the presentation of our youngest company members to the press: two colonies of honeybees whose hives we had installed on the roof of the opera house a few weeks ago. They seem to like it on our roof and interacted peacefully with the members of the press who had come to photograph and film them. Observing the enthusiasm of the present COC staff members, our bees already are favourite company pets with substantial star potential.
From the bees I went to the Donalda Club in Don Mills as the guest speaker for the Women's Musical Club of Toronto's annual fundraising luncheon. It is always an honour to be invited to speak and I take advantage of these occasions to talk about the relevance of opera as a truly contemporary art form and our plans for its bright future at the COC.
The evening marked a milestone in the history of our Ensemble Studio: for the first time we had put a performance on the stage of the Four Seasons Centre in which all roles (except one) were taken by our young artists. This specially added performance of Idomeneo was conducted by Harry Bicket, who also is in charge of the other performances of Mozart's opera, with our full orchestra and chorus. I was so proud and happy to see how much our young artists did themselves and the company proud. They truly lived up to the challenge, kept their nerves under control and delivered an absolutely professional performance proving that they are no longer the stars of tomorrow, but already the stars of today. Bravi!
Right now, I am listening to the last performance of The Flying Dutchman. It is sad to see this great production with its wonderful cast go, but I am grateful for a very successful run. Before the end of our season on May 30th there are still a few performances of Maria Stuarda and Idomeneo. If you haven't seen them hurry to get your tickets!
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